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T - Trace Evidence: How Trace Evidence Solves Criminal Cases

T- Trace Evidence Links Killers to Crime Scene

What is trace evidence?

T Trace Evidence

Trace evidence consist of tiny particles of physical evidence that aid law enforcement and crime labs in solving criminal cases. Trace evidence is often left at a crime scene when two articles touch or come into contact with one another. They tell a story of their own. Trace evidence can be vital in solving a case. 

    Did the perpetrator move the body?

    Was the body transported in a specific car?

    How close was the victim to the window? 

    Where was the victim when the bullet shattered the glass?

   Trace evidence can help determine the type of weapon used in a homicide. In a case where the victim was strangled to death, fibers embedded in her neck can be traced to a specific rope, scarf, or belt.

  Some examples of trace evidence: 

Hair, fibers from clothing or carpeting, glass, paint, paint chips, soil, debris, cosmetics. 

Hair is the most common source of trace evidence
Hair (human and animal) if linked to a suspect can place him at the scene of the crime.

Crime Fiction Murder Mystery:

     DNA is back and I will go into it in further detail with my letter U post, which will be a complete breakdown of all physical evidence in the Martha Clinton murder case.             

For today, let’s concentrate on Trace Evidence, specifically hair found on the victim’s body, believed to have been left by her killer.

 Martha Clinton’s autopsy confirmed the presence of brown hair, in and around the victim’s vaginal area and the victim was clutching strands of hair in her palm when she died. Preliminary tests concluded that the hair does not belong to the victim. 

Tests confirm the hair is:
  • Human
  • Brown in color
  • Male
  • Caucasian 
  • Hair in Victim’s hand = Hair from a person’s head. Hair found in vaginal area determined to be pubic hair

Thomas Clinton’s pubic hair was not a match and he has been eliminated as the contributor of the pubic hair, but he has not been eliminated as a suspect.

Detective Coker intends to ask the following persons of interest to voluntarily submit to a hair and hair follicle test, whereby several strands of the hair on their heads and several strands of their pubic hair will be collected from their persons then sent to the crime lab for a comparison analysis with the known hair. If any of the following refuse, then Detective Coker believes he has sufficient probable cause to get a warrant compelling the individuals to submit to a hair follicle test.
Hair Sample Needed From The Following:
  1. Dr. Daryl Kelly
  2. Michael Prejean
  3. Dr. Daryl Kelly
  4. Samuel Watson
For an updated case analysis of the Martha Clinton homicide, for the crime fiction murder mystery, click on the Legal Fiction page of my blog.

Visit the Idea Page of my blog for a complete list of witnesses, links to each of my A to Z post that contain clues to solving the mystery and a list of each daily clue according to the letter of the day.

Question: Is Detective Coker experiencing what we call tunnel vision in this case? Has he predetermined that the killer is male, because of the presence of semen and pubic hair? Police have been known to develop a theory and once they are convinced of their theory of the crime, the put blinders on and often ignore relevant evidence that points in an entirely different direction? It seems that Coker has ruled out the possibility that a woman killed Martha Clinton? 

What do you think? Have you ruled out a female killer? Isn't it possible that Martha Clinton had consensual sex with both her husband and a lover or even a stranger, close to the time of her death, but neither of her sexual partners killed her? Is is possible that a female friend or foe came along later and shot her.

You might want to reexamine Means, Motive & Opportunity before rendering your verdict. Remember the winner, the first person to solve the murder wins a Kindle Fire 

Click on the Kindle image for more details.

Winner of my random drawing for week 3 is Nick Wilford at Scattergun Scribblings. Do you follow Nick's blog? If not, now is the time to start. His A to Z theme is really fun. He selects a random word from the dictionary each day (one that he is not familiar with) and then he uses that word and writes a 100 word piece of amazing flash fiction. Head over there now and read some of his work.

If you are truly interested in learning how law enforcement and crime labs utilize trace evidence, I recommend watching this short video (3 Minutes) from Investigation Discovery, Solved -- Trace Evidence.

Today's Clue Again We Have Two (2) Clues: Letter T - (1)Twin Defense (2) Transplant

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